By John O'Brien, President of the Academy of Notre Dame
While the obvious main priority and focus in a school should be on providing a top quality education for its students and instilling a love of learning, there is also an opportunity and an obligation to establish meaningful and impactful engagement with parents. Research shows that having regular communication and a strong partnership between home and school benefits everyone, especially the students.
Benefits for Students:
When parents are involved in their child’s education, there are tangible advantages for the child, including better performance and success in school. Research conducted by different organizations over time shows that parental involvement leads to more engagement by students, which translates to better grades and standardized test scores. Just as importantly, it also enhances students’ love of learning. Other benefits that occur with regular parent involvement include higher attendance, improved behavior, and further strengthening of social skills.
Benefits for Parents:
Involved parents are much more in tune with their child’s academic program and as a result are better prepared to support them at home. They also tend to form a close bond/relationship with teachers and staff, which strengthens their connection with the school. In addition, parents who volunteer their time at school and attend school events become part of the fabric of the school community.
Benefits for Teachers and Schools:
Building that home and school relationship does wonders for teachers’ morale and self-esteem, and it allows them to foster lifelong friendships with their students’ families. Additionally, parents who are involved and are well educated about the curriculum and other offerings at their child’s school can also be wonderful ambassadors for prospective families.
At the Academy
Here at the Academy of Notre Dame we believe that parental involvement both with the school and with a child’s education have a direct correlation with a more successful and meaningful experience for all. We are blessed to have two hard working groups of parent volunteers that host celebrations and raise funds for student activities. We also have parents who volunteer individually as needs arise as well as those who step up when they recognize a need. We applaud these efforts and continue to seek opportunities for parent-school collaboration so that we all may benefit.